School of Informatics

Decolonising the Curriculum

The School of Informatics is committed to making its curriculum and learning experience as inclusive as possible.

The University of Edinburgh is taking action against racism in its various forms - personal, cultural and institutional. Silence and inaction makes an institution complicit in systemic racism; promoting inclusion, respect and dignity and stressing a zero-tolerance approach to any form of discrimination is a necessity.

The University's Anti-Racist Action Plan for 2020/21 sets out steps that will be taken to tackle inequalities, racism and racial prejudice on an institutional level. It is recognised that we must challenge and rework the current pedagogy, which was rooted in imperial and colonial ideas about knowledge and learning, and make the syllabus more diverse, more international or more inclusive.

To address this, working groups around the University have been set up with a focus on Decolonising the Curriculum. Vijay Nagarajan, the Director of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion leads the Informatics working group. 

Decolonisation is the disruption and dismantling of colonial structures and behaviours. It is open to interpretation what “decolonising” means in a discipline that was invented largely after the colonial age, but we are taking it to be an opportunity to re-examine what we teach so that we can identify and remove any barriers to participation, making the curriculum and learning experience as inclusive as possible. 

The working group is currently planning and preparing workshops with teaching staff to start this conversation.

A Q&A session about decolonising the Informatics curriculum with the Head of School was also run for students.

Related links

Inclusion at the University of Edinburgh 

Race equality at the University of Edinburgh